Sunday, December 3, 2017

CIM Relay (Greg, Anna, Troy, Kris)


12/3/17 – Folsom


7.3 Greg, 6.2 Anna, 7.0 Troy, 5.7 Kris


54:07 Greg, 45:54 Anna, 49:03 Troy, 49:57 Kris.  3:19:01 Total.


2nd/24 division, 66th overall


Anna Soares, Greg Biddle, Kris Kennedy

Robin Soares, Mike Pirnat

Glad to have a full 4 person team this year at the CIM Relay Challenge.  My friend, Greg, will lead off on the longest leg, then Anna (stepping up from 5.7 to 6.2 mi), then me, and, finally, our faithful Huddle Leader, Kris Kennedy.

I haven’t raced since July!  There have been a lot of busy changes at our house and training has often been the first to go.  But it’s good to get back into the race routine.

I have an Achilles tendon issue on my rt leg.  I stretched last night and hope it helps.

I’m glad to have done some quiet time this morning.  Even though I depend entirely on God for a successful day, my distracted mind doesn’t show it.  I think about so many things I need to do.  But I’m trying to relinquish more and more to the Lord.  This morning I read Ps 94:19 “When anxiety was great within me, your consolation brought me joy.”  I come to a new understanding that He hears me and will console me about my concerns if I trust Him.

Anna and I head out and arrive at Leg 2 right as the race starts 7.3 miles away.  It’s a beautiful clear day, but chilly enough to wear gloves.  Anna says she’s nervous.  We watch the marathon leaders go by at 5:00 pace!!  We are happily reunited with Leonie, runner #2 for Robin’s team.  And we cheer on her husband, Rich, as he goes by at 7:00 pace doing the first 1/2 for his relay team.  Leonie & Rich came down from Oregan to continue the CIM Relay tradition.

Robin comes running in, tagging Leonie.  And soon after Greg comes in and tags Anna.  First exchange is a success!

Greg & I rush to Leg 3 where I warm up before Anna comes in.  My legs are tight and achilles is sore.  But I stretch, focus on form, and pray and soon I’m feeling a little better.  I get in the corral, not expecting Anna for a few more min when Robin yells, “Troy, she’s coming!”  Wow, she’s early.  Thank you, Lord.  I was concerned about her pacing the longer distance in the chilly weather.  After a perfect exchange, I’m off!

I’m running with a lot of intention… duty, I suppose.  Kind of serious I realize.  I notice the spectators and start to remember what an opportunity racing is.. an opportunity to be thankful and show my appreciation for the Lord allowing me to do this.  But my legs aren’t turning over easily and I feel my tight right hamstring already.  It’s hard to smile and be joyful when things are hard.  God is reminding me.. and my focus starts turning from inward to outward.  Encouraging and thanking a few people.

Mile 1. 6:58.  That was hard work for a pace I’m trying to keep for 6 more miles.  And soon I’m falling behind.. 7 secs behind.  I try to improve my form, relax my muscles, and run faster on the downhills.  I notice there are many little declines and I can gain seconds on each.  I’m back on pace… even a little under. 

Mile 2. 7:03.  I’m very thankful and optimistic that I can keep gaining seconds if I work the descents.  I see an ultra runner who has come to our track workouts.  He says he’s feeling beat, but this is probably just another one of his many long runs this week.  I’m passing runners.  I hope to come in a little under my pace to help the team.

Mile 3. 6:45.  It feels good to be racing again.  Working hard to give God my best effort.  I’ll be sore tomorrow but it’s a special time today.  I’ve been having trouble focusing on God lately.. for even 20 minutes.. it’s because I want to do so much and keep so many things from going wrong.  But right now I’m reminded how much I need Him.  Maybe a little bit of pain helps.  He is consoling my anxieties and replacing them with joy.

CIM Relays 171203 (6)Mile 4. 7:01.  I smile and thank the people with the funny signs.. like “You think this is hard? Try growing bangs.” and a woman holding a big sign, “You’re tired?  My arms are killing me”.  I’m thanking the Lord, too.  Everything is holding up really well.  But I am getting tired.  I make sure to drink water at each aid station.  I really need it.  I guess I didn’t hydrate well because of the cooler temps.  I really look forward to seeing the 20 mile marker and knowing the exchange is near.  Up ahead I see a big pacing group.  I hope I can catch him.  I take off my arm warmers.  2 light shirts and a beenie.  Perfect.

Mile 5. 6:49.  I catch the 3:12 group!  The reason they have this odd pacing time is because the Boston Qualifying time of 3:15 is not fast enough to guarantee an entry so they figure 3 minutes faster is.  I wonder if I can catch the 3:10 group but I don’t see them anywhere.

Mile 6. 6:55.  Just a mile to go!  The 20 mile sign is coming soon. 10k done. I think of Anna doing her first 10k this morning.  I see a guy holding a big sign, “Turn to Jesus .. and be Saved”  I’m glad he’s out here every year.  For some, they won’t care for a sign, but there are others for which it may be the perfect hope at the perfect time of their life.  I hope so because Jesus has saved me and blessed me so many times I don’t know where I’d be without Him.  Still no sign of the 3:10 group.  My Garmin says I’m almost 30 secs under my time (later I would find out my Garmin was wrong and I was really right at pace).  Yay! Through the 20 mile sign.  I try to pick it up. Last chance to catch the 3:10 group but still can’t see them.  I pull out my phone thinking it will be cool to get a picture of Kris ready to exchange.. but I don’t see him.  There he is behind a barricade!  He finds a way a through, points the direction to his car, and we make the exchange.  “Have a good run, Kris!”.  My last mile was 6:51.  But actually they were all a little slower.  My finish is 49:03, just 3 secs over my goal.  But a mile into it I didn’t think I could even come near it.  “Thank you, Lord, for your faithfulness and grace to bless us even when I fail to focus on you as I should.”  Now it’s off to the finish to see how our team does!

CIM Relays 171203 (5)FCAEndurance_byTreeIMG952904